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Most UK Consumers Still Find Broadband Speed Adverts Misleading
A new survey of 529 online people in the United Kingdom by ISPreview.co.uk has found that 75% continue to find ISP advertising of broadband speeds, which often turn out to be a lot slower than promoted, to be misleading.
Furthermore 82% of respondents felt that the term "unlimited usage", which is often used to reflect the download allowance of a specific broadband package, was misleading. Perhaps unsurprisingly just over half of respondents (51%) admitted that they had not even read their ISPs terms (T&C's) or usage policy documentation.
"The ASA's recent guidelines, when combined with Ofcom's existing Speeds Code of Practice 2010 (***), were designed to help consumers but clearly many people continue to have concerns," said ISPreview.co.uk's Founder, Mark Jackson. "Consumers would naturally benefit from educating themselves about these rules because some, such as Ofcom's code, require ISPs to put real effort into resolving problems."
"Broadband performance can of course be affected by all sorts of different factors, such as the quality of your home wiring, the length of a phone line, an ISPs local network capacity and or any related Traffic Management measures. But at the same time ISPs could also improve their transparency, such as by making their service restrictions both simpler to understand and more accessible."
"We strongly believe that Ofcom and the ASA could do more, such as by working to standardise how service restrictions are communicated and putting an end to the practice of burying such details away in small print or hard to find sections of a website. A tougher approach could also involve turning the current voluntary Speed Code into a mandatory requirement for all providers," concluded Jackson.
* Online survey conducted between 24th June 2012 and 23rd July 2012 with 529 UK internet visitors to the ISPreview.co.uk website.
*** Ofcom's 2010 Speeds Code of Practice